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Finding A Piece Of The Truth

One day Mara, the Evil One, was travelling through the villages of India with his attendants. he saw a man doing walking meditation whose face was lit up on wonder. The man had just discovered something on the ground in front of him.

Mara's attendant asked what that was and Mara replied, “A piece of truth.”

“Doesn't this bother you when someone finds a piece of truth, O Evil One?” his attendant asked.

“No,” Mara replied. “Right after this, they usually make a belief out of it.”

From 108 Treasures for the Heart: A Guide for Daily Living by Benny Liow

What Is the Spiritual Moral / Meaning of the “Finding A Piece Of The Truth” Story?

It reminds us of the transient nature of truth and the tendency of the human mind to cling to beliefs. In our quest for understanding, it is essential to recognize that truth is not static; it is a dynamic, ever-unfolding revelation. The spiritual lesson here lies in cultivating a sense of openness and humility, allowing ourselves to embrace the fluidity of truth without becoming attached to fixed beliefs.

At the heart of this story lies the concept of mindfulness and present-moment awareness. The man in the story is depicted engaging in walking meditation, fully immersed in the beauty of the present moment. His face radiates wonder, signifying a state of deep inner connection and presence. Through his practice, he embodies mindfulness, awakening to the inherent truth and wisdom that resides within each moment. This serves as a gentle reminder for us to cultivate mindfulness in our own lives, allowing us to access the profound depths of truth that exist in every moment of our existence.

The encounter between Mara and the man underscores the spiritual principle of discernment. Mara, representing the egoic mind and the forces of illusion, seeks to manipulate and distort truth for his own agenda. However, the man remains unaffected by Mara's presence, his inner light shining brightly with the discovery of truth. This illustrates the importance of discerning between truth and illusion, between the egoic mind and the voice of inner wisdom. Through discernment, we can navigate the complexities of life with clarity and insight, discerning the subtle nuances of truth amidst the illusions of the world.

Another spiritual moral of the story lies in the recognition of the dual nature of truth. While truth itself is absolute and unchanging, our perception of truth is often colored by our beliefs and conditioning. The man's discovery of truth is immediately followed by Mara's observation that individuals tend to form beliefs based on their understanding of truth. This highlights the inherent paradox of truth – while it exists independently of our beliefs, our beliefs shape our perception of truth. Thus, the story invites us to examine our beliefs with a discerning eye, recognizing their potential to distort or illuminate our understanding of truth.

The encounter between Mara and the man also speaks to the power of self-awareness and inner inquiry on the spiritual path. Despite Mara's attempts to distract and deceive, the man remains anchored in his inner truth, unaffected by external influences. His unwavering commitment to self-discovery and inner exploration enables him to discern truth from falsehood, leading him closer to the essence of his being. This serves as a powerful reminder for us to cultivate self-awareness and engage in deep inner inquiry, allowing us to transcend the illusions of the ego and awaken to the truth of our divine nature.

Moreover, the story underscores the importance of humility and non-attachment in our spiritual journey. While the man discovers a piece of truth, he does not cling to it or become attached to it. Instead, he remains open and receptive, recognizing the ever-expanding nature of truth. This humility allows him to embody the spiritual principle of non-attachment, freeing himself from the shackles of egoic identification and allowing truth to flow through him with grace and ease. As spiritual seekers, we are called to emulate this spirit of humility and non-attachment, surrendering our egoic desires and allowing truth to reveal itself to us in its purest form.

Personal Reflection Questions

Spiritual stories are an opportunity to reflect on your own life. Here are 10 questions you can use to go deeper with the teachings in this story:

  1. Have you ever experienced a moment of profound insight or revelation, akin to the man's discovery of truth in the story? Reflect on how you felt in that moment and how it impacted your perception of truth and belief.
  2. What does the image of the man engaged in walking meditation evoke within you? Consider the significance of mindfulness and present-moment awareness in your own spiritual journey.
  3. In what ways do you relate to Mara, the Evil One, as a symbol of the egoic mind and illusion? Reflect on the ways in which your egoic tendencies may influence your perception of truth and belief.
  4. How do you discern between truth and belief in your own life? Explore the subtle nuances between absolute truth and the beliefs we construct based on our understanding of truth.
  5. Reflect on the concept of humility and non-attachment as illustrated by the man's response to Mara's observation. In what ways can you cultivate humility and non-attachment in your own spiritual practice?
  6. Consider the role of self-awareness and inner inquiry in navigating the complexities of truth and belief. How can you deepen your self-awareness and engage in inner inquiry to discern truth from falsehood?
  7. Reflect on the paradox of truth presented in the story – while truth itself is absolute and unchanging, our perception of truth is often colored by our beliefs and conditioning. How does this paradox manifest in your own spiritual journey?
  8. Explore the power dynamics between Mara and the man in the story. How do external influences, represented by Mara, shape our perception of truth and belief? Reflect on the importance of inner resilience and steadfastness in the face of external influences.
  9. Consider the significance of wonder and curiosity in the man's discovery of truth. How can you cultivate a sense of wonder and curiosity in your own spiritual practice, allowing truth to reveal itself to you in unexpected ways?
  10. Reflect on Mara's observation that individuals often form beliefs based on their understanding of truth. How do your beliefs shape your perception of truth? Are there any beliefs you hold that may be limiting your understanding of truth?